I like shopping at thrift stores. I attribute much of that to the fact that I am frugal and like good deals. Part of this was learned when my mother volunteered at the Good Samaritan Thrift Store for years in San Antonio. Mom was continually bringing home bargains that she (or Susan) had spotted with us in mind.
I never mind shopping at thrift stores. Clothes can easily be washed so I don’t worry about germs. Thrift stores have a variety of clothes that are priced at a fraction of the original price. Shopping at a thrift store takes work – and patience – to find a good bargain. You never know what you might find at a thrift store! Sometimes you leave empty handed, and sometimes you leave with several good finds.
It takes time to find the good thrift stores. Some thrift stores price things higher than others. I have good deals at Goodwill, but due to the price structure, I have found even better deals at Salvation Army Thrift Store. That was where I hurried when I received the text last week to buy any 5 items for only $5.
It can be overwhelming to enter a thrift store. The Salvation Army in Fort Wayne sorts shirts / blouses by colors which I like. I know what colors I like to wear and head for those reds and teals, while skipping the yellows and oranges. I’m always on the lookout for nice dress clothes for school so that is one thing for which I look. After many years of thrift store shopping, I can quickly flip through a rack and pull out the items that catch my eye.
I look at the size and hold those items up to see if they fit. I look at the garment closely for any spots, stains or tears. I look at the care label. I try to steer clear of dry clean only items, unless it’s something that looks hand washable and really catches my eye. Then, it’s off to the dressing room I go. Even though thrift stores are full of good bargains, if it doesn’t fit me or look good on me, it’s not a good bargain! I don’t want to spend money – even if it’s only a $1 – on something that I’m not going to wear. I’ll keep that $1 in my pocket unless the item is something I will truly wear.
Last week, I easily found 10ish items to try on in the dressing room. 3 of those got weeded out quickly when I tried them on in the dressing room. What looked good on the hanger, didn’t look so good on me. I carried one item around for awhile before deciding I didn’t really like it, either. One of the items I still had in my hand, I happened to notice was a brown tag – which meant it was marked down to $0.49 for the day. That left me with exactly 5 items to purchase for $5.
Now comes the exciting part. Are you ready to see what I bought last week at Salvation Army? Here’s what I bought.
I found two nicely lined black dress skirts. The one on the left fell just below knee-length and didn’t have a tag in it, but had pockets that lay flat – which I liked. The skirt on the right is a Petite Sophisticate skirt that falls right at the knee. Both are lined and well made. The sweater was a cute Sonoma sweater which will look nice over an ordinary white tee-shirt. The blouse on the right was Tavora. I am not familiar with the brand and would not have necessarily tried it on, but there was a cute ruffle at the neck that caught my eye. I noticed when I got home that this top was still brand new because the bag with the additional button was still attached to one tag!
The cream blouse is an Ann Taylor Loft blouse that looks brand new. An Ann Taylor blouse for $1? Yes, please! The teal tee-shirt was Ana from JCPenney. I have several of these tee-shirts in my closet and they are great for Saturdays around the house and in the summer. At $0.49, this beats the lowest $6 sale price that I’ve ever found at JCPenney.
All in all, at Salvation Army, I spent $5.49 for these 6 items of clothes. If I had brought these items at retail cost – no sales – I estimate I would have spent at least $75, but probably closer to $100. What’s not to love about thrift stores when you can find great deals like these?
This recent trip to the thrift store reminded me why I love shopping at thrift stores. I want to spend more times shopping at thrift stores in the future – as well as garage sales. Thrift stores are a great way to save money and look cute doing so!
Now, I am curious. Do you shop at thrift stores? If so, what’s your best tip for shopping at a thrift store? What has been your best thrift store deal?